Ever wonder if that route you run every day is the most efficient? Looking back, it all started when you found a map, grabbed your highlighter, marked it up and Voilà! From that day forth, your agency's routes were set in stone and they've been traveled over and over and over again ever since. You know that route like the back of your hand and of course its the most efficient because after all, you came up with it!
Well now with GIS tools such as ArcGIS Network Analyst for optimizing routes with the Vehicle Routing Problem Solver you may find that your old highlighted map is costing you lots of money in wasted fuel, time, and equipment ware. This post will take a brief look at the process optimizing routes for solid waste and recycle collection.
Step 1. Obtain point features for pickup locations
Step 2. Generate Orders for Routing (condense if needed)
Step 3. Model Existing Collection Routes
Step 4. Adjust Orders (pickup locations)
Step 5. Evaluate Various Scenarios and Select Optimized Routes
Step 6. Using the Results
ArcGIS Network Analyst can generate turn-by-turn directions with detailed information on stops and estimated arrival and departure times. This information can be distributed to the drivers or entered into a GPS guidance applications such as Navigator for ArcGIS which will soon allow users to utilize their own pre-defined routes from ArcGIS Desktop or Online.